It won't include an
overpass, but New Albany, Ind., is aspiring to begin improving a portion of
Grant Line Road next year, The Evening News and Tribune reports. The Board of
Public Works and Safety approved a formal agreement with CSX Transportation,
which owns the railroad tracks that cross Grant Line Road near the General
Mills-Pillsbury plant entrance.
The deal basically confirms
that CSXT can begin forming design plans to improve the railroad crossing, with
the city agreeing to pay the planning and construction costs. Due to safety
concerns, CSXT rules that "no one can touch their facilities" except their
crews, said John Rosenbarger, director of public facilities projects for New
The standard agreement "gives
[CSXT] the green light to do whatever engineering work they need to do and to
coordinate with our road engineers," Rosenbarger said.
Improving the railroad
crossing surface and installing new gates and flashers are just some of the
upgrades slated for Grant Line Road. The city will be using a portion of the
$6.125 million it received from the state for taking over 4.5 miles of Ind. 111
in April to foot construction projects from Mount Tabor Road to McDonald Lane
along Grant Line Road. Rosenbarger said that will include adding a lane near
University Woods Drive along with the installation of sidewalks and pedways
along the route.
An August preliminary
design submitted to the board of works called for Grant Line Road to be
stretched to five lanes from Mount Tabor Road inbound to the railroad tracks. The
Indiana Department of Transportation had pegged Grant Line Road for a similar
project until it relinquished control of a portion of the thoroughfare to New
The state had originally
planned a 120-foot overpass to extend over the railroad tracks, but had
scrapped that idea prior to transferring the road to the city's domain.
Mayor Doug England said in
a phone interview he wasn't supportive of the state's overpass idea, describing
it as a "monstrous project for the community."
"I think the overpass would
have been horrendous with the businesses it would have knocked out," he said.
The city will have access
to the right-of-way the state purchased for improvements along the route,
England said. Rosenbarger said additional property will likely have to be
purchased, but the city's project will not have the impact on businesses the
overpass would have created.
England said the
construction would hopefully alleviate some of the traffic flow problems in
that section of Grant Line Road. The city is also working on extending Reas
Lane to connect its industrial parks in the corridor as a way to keep much of
the heavy truck traffic off of the busy thoroughfare.
Rosenbarger said the city
hopes to have design completed by the end of 2010 or early next year, with work
to begin next construction season.
The Chicago Transit Board approved
a three-year contract with Progressive Industries, Inc., to provide the agency
with ‘green' general purpose liquid cleaner and odor elimination concentrate
for use in the cleaning of buses, trains and facilities.
October 8-11, Washington,
D.C., Metro will install a new track switch, repair and upgrade its platforms
and conduct make landscaping repairs on the Blue, Orange, Red and Yellow lines
to improve long-term reliability and service. The track switch on the Blue and
Orange Line that will close the Farragut West, McPherson Square and the lower
level of the Metro Center Metrorail station is work that was recommended by the
National Transportation Safety Board to improve rail safety. There will be no
train service through those stations on the Blue or Orange Lines.
As part of the Sound
Transit 2 plan approved by voters in 2008, Sound Transit is starting the formal
planning process for mass transit between Northgate and Lynnwood, Wash. Sound
Transit invites the public to attend a hands-on planning session to learn and
• Project purpose and schedule
• Areas that may be
served by future stations
• Criteria for reviewing
October has special
significance for the International Right of Way Association (IRWA), whose 10,000
members play a vital role in advancing the nation's transportation, water and
energy infrastructure projects. October is International Right of Way Month,
and in acknowledging the industry's role in bringing essential infrastructure
projects to life, IRWA launched a Project of the Year Competition.
in the United States decreased by 9.2 percent in 2009 from 2008, according to
preliminary figures released today by the National Transportation Safety Board.
The data indicate that transportation fatalities in all modes totaled 35,928 in
2009, compared to 39,569 in 2008. Although highway, rail, aviation, deaths
declined, pipeline and marine fatalities showed an increase.
Union Pacific will continue
its aggressive investment in American transportation infrastructure by
reigniting its double-track initiative on the Sunset Route in the Southwestern
United States. With an investment of roughly $18 million by the end of this
year, Union Pacific will complete the double-tracking of nine miles of this
premium line in Imperial County, Calif., and another nine miles in Maricopa
County, Ariz., with more work planned for 2011. This project is part of $2.6-billion
to be spent by Union Pacific in 2010 to support current and future freight
transportation needs of its customers.
Senator Tom Harkin
(D-Iowa) said that a total of $3,009,763 will be coming to Iowa to cover the
cost of repairing damage to some of Iowa's smaller railroads sustained during
2008's historic storms and floods. The funding comes from the U.S. Department
of Transportation's (DOT) Federal Railroad Administration, and was initially
appropriated in the 2008 Disaster Appropriations bill. Harkin is a senior
member of the Appropriations subcommittee that funds transportation
New Jersey transportation
officials said Oct. 5 they had indefinitely suspended about 100 state-funded
road and rail projects in their early stages as the cash-strapped state
grapples with how to pay for needed infrastructure improvements over the long
haul, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports.
Bridge or tunnel? The
city of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., seems poised to plunge into another contentious
debate over the best way to get people past a body of water, the Sun-Sentinel
reports. A decade ago, the fight was over what to do with the 17th Street
Causeway over the Intracoastal Waterway. Today, it's the Florida East Coast
Railway and a proposed commuter train that needs to cross the New River in
downtown Fort Lauderdale without being held up by boats.